Bryan Ruiz (red jersey), who is playing with Sporting Lisbon in the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League, was called up to Costa Rica for World Cup qualifiers to be played later this month. (Photo: Victor Straffon/Straffon Images)
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica -- Costa Rica head coach Oscar Ramirez announced Wednesday a 23-man roster for the opening matches of fifth round, CONCACAF qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup against Trinidad & Tobago (November 11, away) and the United States (November 15, home).
The squad is highlighted by the inclusion of Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas, who hasn’t played a competitive match for the Ticos since a 3-0 win over visiting Jamaica in the fourth round on March 29.
In addition to Navas, other squad members participating in the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League include Sporting Lisbon attackers Joel Campbell (3 games/0 goals in Champions League) and Bryan Ruiz (3/1), and Celtic defender Cristian Gamboa (2/0).
Four players with clubs that recently reached the 2016/17 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals were also called up – defenders Francisco Calvo (Saprissa) and Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps), as well as midfielders Cristian Bolanos (Vancouver Whitecaps) and David Guzman (Saprissa)
Costa Rica is riding a four-game winning streak, scoring at least three goals in three of those outings.
GOALKEEPERS: Esteban Alvarado (Trabzonspor/Turkey), Keylor Navas (Real Madrid/Spain), Patrick Pemberton (Alajuelense)
DEFENDERS: Johnny Acosta (Herediano), Francisco Calvo (Saprissa), Cristian Gamboa (Celtic/Scotland), Ronald Matarrita (New York City FC/USA), Bryan Oviedo (Everton/England), Pablo Salazar (Herediano), Jose Salvatierra (Alajuelense), Michael Umaña (Alajuelense), Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps/Canada)
MIDFIELDERS: Randall Azofeifa (Herediano), Cristian Bolaños (Vancouver Whitecaps), Celso Borges (Deportivo La Coruña/Spain), David Guzman (Saprissa), Bryan Ruiz (Sporting Lisbon/Portugal), Yeltsin Tejeda (Lausanne/Switzerland), Johan Venegas (Montreal Impact), Rodney Wallace (Recife/Brazil)
FORWARDS: Joel Campbell (Sporting Lisbon/Portugal), Ariel Rodriguez (Bangkok Glass/Thailand), Marco Urena (Brondby/Denmark)